This is one year I’m glad to be leaving–hell, it’s a whole decade I’m glad is over. And what a decade–starting with the Supreme Court deciding that ANY President is better than the elected President when it’s too annoying to actually have a legally mandated recount, through 9/11, not capturing Osama bin Laden when he was less than a handful of football fields away, attacking Iraq because they might have horrible weapons while their army barely had shoes, setting up concentration camps to house interrogations fueled by torture, having the country’s transportation held hostage by the oil companies who were given carte blanche to raise prices anytime they saw fit, watching one of the great cities of the US be destroyed by storm and flooding due to inadequate levees built by the Army Corps of Engineers, having a damn over-a-year long Presidential race, electing the first black President who offered us a vision of hope while the economy tanked and then seeing those hopes tarnished by a first year in office that seemed like nothing less than more of the same BS we’d been through for the first nine years of the new millenium.
President Obama grades his performance as worth a solid B+, but if he were to be graded with regards to his success in the most important issues of his first year, tougher regulation of banking, staving off unemployment, delivering a health care reform that actually helps Americans, a C would be the best he could be given and then only from a professor who didn’t give out D’s. What Obama lacks is leadership. He’s an inspiring speaker, but in terms of actually getting things done, he’s been too focused on trying to reach a consensus with an opposition party that would say no if he said the sun rises in the east, and a renegade faction of his own party that is more intent on making sure their bread gets buttered rather than achieving something of value to the country. At times, it seems like Obama is not running the country but has delegated that task to Rahm Emanuel filling in as America’s Chief Operating Officer. We are on the verge of legislating a "health care reform" whose principle accomplishment is mandating that all Americans buy insurance from the same pack of parasites that has driven American health care into one of the worst in the world. Instead of taking the tough love route he took with the automobile companies, Obama has been mollycoddling the bank industry and not even blinking when he gets flipped the bird by the three CEOs who just couldn’t make the meeting he called. Not to mention an unemployment rate over 10% and a lackluster mortgage relief program that has failed to stem the rising tide of home foreclosures.
President Obama, the time to get tough was yesterday. You’d better make it one of your New Year’s resolutions or you’re going to find yourself with a hostile Republican-led Congress come next November. Stop thumbing your nose at the progressives who elected you because, if you think it was tough reaching across the aisle when you had a majority, just think how tough it will be when the people who want to impeach you for existing hold the reins.
So Goodbye 2009. I’m going to forget about politics for the next few weeks. May all my readers have happy holidays no matter what holidays they have to suffer through. Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, whatever you say for Kwanza, we’ve already passed Eid, Happy New Year, Gode Yule, blessed solstice and my personal choice, Sated Saturnalia–the holiday designed to offend EVERYONE. We’ll see you again on January 11.